The empire is a monarchy run by a hereditary aristocracy with traditional gender roles. It is in the throes of civil war, fighting to re-integrate secessionists and 'outies'. And then it discovers the moties, seemingly pleasant and civilised - and keen to expand into the empire's territory.
Shouldn't we welcome these charming immigrants, with so much potential for diversity, cultural enrichment and trade?
I read aloud (and recorded) "The Mote in God's Eye" over thirty eight evenings in sessions ranging from 30 minutes to more than an hour.
Clare often falls asleep, and you may hear her snoring. Sometimes we're interrupted by phone calls and people at the door. The clock chimes tend to stop me in my tracks. Sometimes I get quite emotional. I can't do Scottish accents.
Quality stuff then.
The format is .m4a and the app I used to record and playback is Easy Voice Recorder Pro.
You can listen to the chapters here. Ideal for those long car journeys or at bedtime.
Trigger warning: everything about this book is liable to offend prevailing mores.
Jerry Pournelle quotes (including this post's title).